Igloo 00064640 Soft Sided Cooler, 12-1 2 Inch Height, 14 Inch Length, 11 Inch Width 55TP57

igloo trailmateDespite not being airtight or leakproof, it managed to hold ice for 40 hours during our testing. Other coolers have more traditional zippers that aren’t watertight yet still provide effective insulation, like the REI Cool Haul, REI Pack Away, and AO 24 Pack. The AO loses some points since its exterior and zipper are not waterproof, though the regular zipper is much easier to use than waterproof ones, which typically require a lot more tugging.

igloo trailmateWhether you’re camping, tailgating, or hosting a barbecue for friends and family, having a great cooler on hand to keep your food and drinks chilled and fresh for hours is key. Coolers come in a variety of shapes, sizes and shells, and the most popular brands (like Yeti and Rtic) are known for their coolers’ ability to retain temperature for long periods of time. That said, temperature retention isn’t the only factor to consider while shopping. Given the differences in construction, capacity and value, the best cooler for you will depend on its intended use.

These designs are sufficiently sized for day trips or weekend road trips, manageable in terms of weight and portability, and won’t take up a ton of space in your vehicle or garage. And we always focus on providing you with long-lasting cold retention, the whole point of a cooler! Our affordable soft cooler designs are thoughtful, intuitive and reliable because we think of YOU and the ways you’ll use your cooler every day or on extended adventures.

We’re big fans of the retro appearance and structured design too. Performance wise, this Igloo soft cooler proved itself to be below average—keeping the interior cool for about 38 hours, about 60% behind the Yeti Flip. Don’t get us wrong, this Igloo soft cooler has versatile storage. But the lack of the rigid bottom means it flops around when you’re not pulling it. However, if you’re looking to spend up on a luxury soft cooler, the Yeti Hopper Flip 18 is a heavy-duty choice for holding ice.

With the Igloo Reactor, I really can just zip my soft cooler up and get going. In fact, if you don’t like zips at all, you can just opt for the cinch top and call it a day! It has a T-bar zipper pull, which gives a superior grip and a lot more leverage when zipping your cooler open or closed. Interestingly, despite not having rotomolded coolers (we’re not counting the older ones) and being overall cheaper than Yeti, Igloo still manages to get good ice retention times on most of its ice chests. Lots of ice chest , cooler bags, rugged hardside coolers, the Party Bar, our entire Retro Collection and more. And we have a huge selection of cooler bags for the beach, perfect for keeping you and your crew refreshed all day long.

Even given its large size, it was still very comfortable to transport, due to the soft, malleable walls. With the simple, wide handles Velcroed together, we could sling the cooler over our shoulders when it was fully loaded. The flat backside wall alleviates bounce when we were using the shoulder strap. We also appreciated the water-resistant exterior pocket, which is easy to open and close.

Smaller options are ideal for hiking and two-person picnics, but you’ll need something larger if you’re bringing lunch for a whole family or juice boxes and oranges for a soccer team. The best option we tested was undoubtedly the RTIC Soft Pack Cooler. We tried the 20-can size and were able to fit 15 cans inside, plus ice. After two and a half hours in the hot sun, the drinks were crisp and cold, and the ice had barely melted.